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It's Official: France rise to No.1 as Springboks fall

WORLD RANKINGS: France moved to the top of the World Rugby Men’s Rankings for the first time in history after a great weekend for Northern Hemisphere teams.


Les Bleus’ hard-fought 20-15 win over Japan on Saturday was followed by shock defeats for New Zealand and South Africa, sending them to No.1 with a lead of nearly two-thirds of a point over Ireland who move up two places to second.

Ireland would have gone top but Will Jordan’s late try in Dunedin brought the winning margin in their 23-12 win over the All Blacks Dunedin below the 16 points required.

With France and Ireland occupying first and second, it is the first time since the rankings were introduced in October 2003 that Northern Hemisphere teams have occupied the top two spots.

South Africa went into the July internationals as the world’s best team, but are now down to third following their last-gasp 12-13 loss at the hands of Wales. Wales are up one place to eighth.

New Zealand have paid a hefty price for their defeat to Ireland in Dunedin as it’s led to a drop of two places to fourth – their lowest-ever position.

Wins for England and Scotland against Australia and Argentina have moved them above their beaten opponents, into fifth and seventh respectively. The Wallabies are down to sixth, while Los Pumas are now ninth, a fall of two places.

Lelos move ahead of Italy

Georgia have taken Italy’s place in 12th as a result of their historic 28-19 win over Italy, with the Azzurri now ranked 14th.


Samoa have taken 13th spot following their 34-18 win over Tonga in the World Rugby Pacific Nations Cup.

The biggest climbers of the weekend in the Top 20 were Romania, with the Oaks moving up three places to 16th on the back of a gain of 1.35 rating points.

Hong Kong and Namibia’s Rugby World Cup qualifier wins came with a one-place gain, with the sides now ranked in 21st and 23rd respectively.

The conclusion of the Rugby Africa Cup 2022 also brought about some sizeable movement in the rankings.


Uganda’s 18-17 victory over Ivory Coast in the fifth-place play-off sees them jump eight places to 44th.

In the encounter between the two beaten semi-finalists, Algeria came out on top against Zimbabwe, 20-12, to reach an all-time high for the second consecutive week.

Algeria are now 74th. Zimbabwe have slipped five places to 32nd and the Ivory Coast are down six to 50th.

World Rankings – Top 10:

1 – France – 89.41 points
2 – Ireland – 88.79
3 – South Africa – 88.61
4 – New Zealand – 88.17
5 – England – 85.14
6 – Australia – 83.28
7 – Scotland – 82.99
8 – Wales – 81.28
9 – Argentina – 79.39
10 – Japan – 77.74

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